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Tag Archives: John Deere

5 ON FRIDAY: FUEL FOR THOUGHT January 12, 2017

by Steve Dust, CEO, Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber

5 on Friday is a two-way street: please send me recommendations on books, reports, articles, blogs, videos, or anything you’re reading or watching that impacts business and the economy.

 

ONE: Deere Prospectus

Manufacturing dominates the Cedar Valley economy. John Deere dominates Cedar Valley manufacturing in many ways. As a publicly traded firm, there is a great deal of information available about John Deere and its performance in the global market. Today, the company released its 2018 Proxy Statement. It is important reading even if I can’t say it’s fun reading. There are other informative documents published on the website.

Deere & Company, Proxy Statement Pursuant to Section 14(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, January 12, 2018

TWO: MidAmerican Energy News

Many Cedar Valley businesses benefit from low electric and natural gas energy rates – both directly and through other utilities, and at high reliability levels – delivered by MidAmerican Energy. As you likely know, MidAmerican is part of Berkshire Hathaway Energy, which is, of course, part of Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffett). There were big changes in top leadership at Berkshire Hathaway this week when Berkshire Hathaway Energy’s CEO Greg Abel was elevated to Vice-Chair of Berkshire Hathaway. Bill Fehrman, who many of you have met as CEO of MidAmerican Energy, has been elevated to CEO of Berkshire Energy, and Adam Wright is now CEO of MidAmerican Energy. We look forward to having a meeting of customers soon to meet the new leader of MidAmerican. Here’s info about Buffett naming Greg and another fellow as vice-chairs of Berkshire Hathaway.

Berkshire Hathaway Names Abel And Jain As Vice Chairmen As Buffett Succession Plans Sharpen, Antoine Gara, Forbes, January 10, 2018

Here’s a link to the MidAmerican Energy news release on Bill Fehrman and Adam Wright assuming new roles.

New Leadership for MidAmerican Energy Company, MidAmerican Energy News, January 11, 2018

THREE: Predictions for Manufacturing

Even the newest Cedar Valley resident knows that manufacturing plays a dominant role in our region’s economy. Courtesy of International Data Corporation (IDC) research firm, here are some high-level predictions for that sector well beyond 2018.

Top 10 Worldwide Manufacturing Predictions, Kimberly Knickle, IDC Community, November 8, 2017

FOUR: One More set of Predictions in Tech for 2018

The CEO of a tech support firm that helps business owners and leaders design technology adoption has set out a few one-year predictions, mostly on tech we already know about.

Top 10 Tech Trend Predictions For 2018 From A Tech CEO, Heinan Landa, Chief Executive, January 5, 2018

FIVE: When Should a CEO Tweet?

The nation’s CEO’s predilection to communicate via Twitter notwithstanding for a moment, there is always a question about when owners/CEOs/senior managers should use social media to communicate about controversy. Here’s some good guidance.

When Should a CEO Tweet about a Controversy? Strategy+Business, Eric J. McNulty, January 4, 2018

5 on Friday: Fuel for Thought

by Steve Dust, CEO, Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber

image Fuel for thought graphic What's Steve Dust Reading this Week? October 20, 2017

John Deere Waterloo TV ad

John Deere has begun showing a terrific 30-second ad on TV in the Cedar Valley area. You have to watch it. Send it along to your colleagues and friends.

Building the best large tractors :30 TV spot

And here’s a nearly eight-minute version

Building the best large tractors

When Should The Firm Adopt Additive Manufacturing

The University of Northern Iowa’s amazing Additive Manufacturing Center and Design Lab in our TechWorks Tech 1 building continues to expand in size, industrial production scale equipment, and Iowa clients served. We know that additive manufacturing in the industrial setting will be an important growth sector for the Cedar Valley, in terms of our firms’ investment in the technology, as well as the opportunity to recruit the makers of the equipment. I am trying to learn more about how the firm makes that investment decision, as well as be better informed about the technology. Here’s a good article with a process and opinion on how the evaluation should be structured.

Courtesy of Supply Chain Management Review.

Is Your Supply Chain Ready for Additive Manufacturing? André Kieviet and Suraj M. Alexander, Supply Chain Management Review, October 16, 2017

Zappos Hsieh on Business Organization

Zappos’ top guy has been famous for risks and successes in e-commerce and flaming failures. Still, he has more than1,500 employees in one of the attention-grabbing e-commerce firms. And he’s a damned good organizational thinker. Here’s an interview he did with the McKinsey firm to make sense out of his “holocracy” approach to organizational management. It is a good, and thought-provoking read.

Safe enough to try: An interview with Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, McKinsey Quarterly, October 2017

China Strategy

This week, China commenced a session of its National Congress of the Communist Party. This Congress is held every five years. George Friedman, one of the best, objective observers of global geo-political/economic issues, republished a report with his analysis of the “grand strategy” employed by China. This nation that has seen extraordinary economic activity and growth, according to Friedman, may be operating in a different strategic framework than we might think.

In China, a Strategy Born of Weakness, Geopolitical Futures, October 18, 2017

Surviving the Merger

We haven’t merged again, but many of your firms are acquiring new operations or creating strategic partnerships of various kinds. No matter how small, these moves require thoughtful communications to all involved to ease anxieties about the post-agreement workplace. This is a good Harvard Business Review article on the topic that would be a good tool for individuals engaged in your growth program.

Surviving M&A: How to thrive amid the turmoil, Harvard Business Review, by Mitchell Lee Marks, Philip Mirvis, and Ron Ashkenas, March-April 2017

Mixed Use Project Construction Begins on TechWorks Campus

Construction has begun on the hotel on the TechWorks Campus in the Cedar Valley of Iowa.

Construction has begun on the hotel on the TechWorks Campus in the Cedar Valley of Iowa.

$40M hotel, training center, conference space, restaurant construction launch in Tech 2 building

Today, TechWorks Campus, a subsidiary of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, together with the City of Waterloo, Iowa Economic Development Authority, and Financial District Properties (FDP), celebrated the construction launch of the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel, John Deere Training Center, and restaurant in the Tech 2 building on the TechWorks Campus. The construction launch represents a significant step in the continued progress of developing The Green@TechWorks.

Governor Terry Branstad, Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds,  and Iowa Economic Development Authority representatives were present to celebrate the launch and its significance as one of the first designated Iowa Reinvestment Districts (IRD) and one of the first IRD project to get underway.

Tech 2, an 88-year old former John Deere tractor manufacturing building, is being transformed into The Green@TechWorks re-development project. The 180,000 square foot, six-story building will house a 191-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel; a new restaurant operated by Consolidated Restaurant Operations, Inc. (CRO); John Deere Regional Training Center and a conference center (managed by Courtyard). The Green project is a principal feature of the overall TechWorks Campus riverfront re-development.

Also celebrating the launch was hotel operator Hotel Specialists, Inc. (HSI) of Jacksonville, Illinois and restaurant operator Consolidated Restaurant Operations, Inc. (CRO) of Dallas, Texas.

The Green & Overall Project

The Green@TechWorks is part of the larger 33-acre TechWorks Campus. In addition to the Tech 1 and Tech 2 buildings (formerly John Deere Westfield R & C2) the campus includes parcels suitable for light manufacturing and retail. TechWorks Campus is the first technology park of its kind in Iowa to combine world class business amenities within a Brownfield redevelopment site.

The John Deere Waterloo Tractor & Engine Museum is already established in the Campus area, as is the Tech 1 Center for Applied Advanced Manufacturing, including the University of Northern Iowa’s Metal Casting and Additive (3D) Manufacturing Center and a Design Lab in partnership with Hawkeye Community College.

A marina and a riverfront restaurant along the Cedar River are also part of the overall $74.1 million Campus development plan.

“This is a momentous day for TechWorks, the city, and the state of Iowa,” says Cary Darrah, General Manager of TechWorks Campus. “Finally, the public can see the results of years of planning and the efforts of those who believed in the vision for this campus. This is the first of many celebrations to come!”

Downtown Momentum

TechWorks Campus is just steps to the Cedar Valley Recreation Trails, entertainment & museum districts, and a variety of Riverloop District amenities.

Other developments underway in the vicinity include: Grand Crossing mixed use residential/condominiums, Single Speed Brewery with Sidecar Coffee Shop, and Hawkeye Community College Urban Campus.

Construction of the Tech 2 building is now underway, with a projected hotel opening in Spring 2017.

TechWorks Campus is a private non-profit corporation and subsidiary of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber. More information can be found at www.techworkscampus.com or by contacting Cary Darrah, General Manager at cdarrah@cedarvalleyalliance.com, or Wes James Facilities Manager at wjames@cedarvalleyalliance.com, or by calling (319) 232-1156.

Find photos here.

Read more in the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier.

Development Team Contacts:

The Green@TechWorks – Financial District Properties: Rodney Blackwell 563-324-9898

City of Waterloo: Mayor Quentin Hart 319-291-4301 or

Economic Development Director Noel Anderson 319-291-4366

 

 

GREATER CEDAR VALLEY ALLIANCE & CHAMBER NOW ACCCEPTING NOMINATIONS FOR ANNUAL AWARDS

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber announces nominations will be accepted now through of January 9, 2015 for a variety of business awards to be presented during the 2015 Annual Celebration on Thursday, March 26th at the Park Place Event Centre.

Do you know of an individual who should be recognized for their contributions in creating a strong business climate and enhancing the quality of life in the Cedar Valley by continued service and leadership?  Has an Alliance & Chamber business or organization made an outstanding contribution to the Cedar Valley and its citizens on a continued basis or with a specific project?  You are encouraged to nominate Alliance & Chamber investors for recognition of their contributions.

“The strength of the Cedar Valley is a result of visionary, innovative leadership – individuals, businesses and organizations who are investing capital, creating jobs and making things happen in the workplace and the community.  It’s important to tell their stories and recognize them for their contributions,” says Alliance & Chamber CEO Steve Dust.

Nominations are being accepted through January 9th for the following awards:

Business of the Year Award (Small companies 1-50 employees, Large companies 51+ employees)
Harold Brock Innovation Award
John Deere Treating Capital Well Award
Fulfilling the Vision of One Award
Cedar Valley Partner Award

Winners from the 2014 event include Bob Koob, Ken Lockard, Barry Schaffter, Tim Hurley, Allen College Unity Point, Hydrite Chemical Co., Kryton Engineered Metals, Inc., Schumacher Elevator and Veridian Credit Union.

Descriptions of the awards and nomination forms are available at the Alliance & Chamber offices or online at www.cedarvalleyalliance.com/programsandevents .  For additional information, please contact Bette Wubbena at bwubbena@cedarvalleyalliance.com or 319-232-1156.

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Kittrell announces the IAMC proposed location at the Cedar Valley TechWorks in Waterloo

Cedar Valley of Iowa – On February 5, the Iowa Innovation Corporation will unveil the vision for the Iowa Advanced Manufacturing Center (IAMC). Two announcement / presentations will be made by Mark Kittrell, President, Iowa Innovation Corporation (IIC) on that day. The first will be at 9:00am during the 2014 Cedar Valley Manufacturing Conference held in Tama Hall on the Hawkeye Community College campus. Later, Kittrell will make an official presentation in Des Moines as a part of the IIC Legislative reception at 5:00pm at the World Food Prize building.

Kittrell’s announcement is expected to include: the IAMC proposed location at the Cedar Valley TechWorks in Waterloo; the role and composition of the newly formed Advanced Manufacturing Workgroup ; a schedule of Advanced Manufacturing Focus Groups to be held in various locations; the resources to be offered to Iowa small & medium size manufacturers such as an industrial business incubator, acceleration services, modeling and simulation, industrial laboratories, state of the art production equipment, access to Iowa’s top industrial innovation work and talent from our universities and community colleges, and process improvement.

Kittrell will also discuss capital and operational funding necessary to continue development of the Iowa Advanced Manufacturing Center.
 

Advanced Manufacturing Workgroup

Co-chaired by Sarah McDonald Hasken, Vice President, A.Y. McDonald MFG. Co., and Glenn Baker, Director Global Manufacturing and Enterprise Services, John Deere, this core group of Iowa’s manufacturing sector, has been formed to set the direction for the IAMC.

The workgroup comprises leaders from all types of advanced manufacturing in the state of Iowa and also includes representatives of the regent universities, community colleges, state government, engineering, business associations and economic development leaders. David Takes, President of Doerfer; Mark Hanawalt, President/CEO of United Business Equipment; and Marvin Schumacher, President of Schumacher Elevator; Metal Casting Center Director Jerry Thiel; Linda Allen, President of Hawkeye Community College; and TechWorks representatives Cary Darrah, Wes James, and Steve Dust participate in the Workgroup from the Cedar Valley.

Advanced Manufacturing Focus Groups

The Advanced Manufacturing Workgroup will hold a series of industry focus group sessions around the state to discuss the issues faced and needs of small & medium size manufacturers.  The focus group sessions will be held March through mid -April. Advanced Manufacturing Focus Group Sessions will be held in: Council Bluffs, Mason City, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, Dubuque, Iowa Quad Cities, and Holstein. Earlier, a session was held in the Cedar Valley.

 

TechWorks Campus

TechWorks is a 30-acre campus containing 20 acres of development sites and 300,000 square feet of space in two existing buildings undergoing renovation.  In 2007, Deere & Company donated land and buildings to start this innovation-driven economic development project.  This historic plant was the site of manufacturing and assembly of the earliest John Deere tractors. TechWorks Campus is a subsidiary of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber.

TechWorks will partner with the Iowa Innovation Corporation to establish and house the Iowa Advanced Manufacturing Center (IAMC) in the Tech I building on the TechWorks Campus.

For more information on the Iowa Innovation Council, the Iowa Innovation Corporation, the Iowa Advanced Manufacturing Center, or the Iowa Innovation Council Legislative Reception on Feb. 5th, contact:

Tonja Richards

Director of Marketing and Communications
Iowa Innovation Corporation
tonja.richards@iowainnovationcoporation.com
(515)421-4038

For more information on the Cedar Valley Manufacturing Conference contact:

Pamela Wright, Business Development Manager

Hawkeye Community College

Pamela.wright@hawkeyecollege.edu
(319)296-2329 ext.3012

 

For information on the TechWorks Campus contact:

Steve Dust, CEO
Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber
sdust@cedarvalleyalliance.com
(319)232-1156

TechWorks proponents forge ahead

September 30, 2013 12:00 pm Editorial – Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier

 

That’s why proponents of the Cedar Valley TechWorks should not lose heart.

TechWorks, the agri-industrial research complex being developed on portions of John Deere’s former Westfield Avenue facilities, is now 10 years in the making. It was jointly proposed in 2003 by then-University of Northern Iowa president Robert Koob and Barry Shaffter, then general manager of Deere’s Waterloo operations.

Part of the project appears to have hit what proponents call a financial “speed bump.” An application for historic designation through the U.S. National Parks Service has been turned down. At stake is some $10 million in historic preservation tax credits toward the $50 million project.

Proponents are forging ahead.

Bryce Henderson, chief financial officer and chief operating officer with Davenport-based Financial District Properties, the project’s developer, said, “This decision was largely subjective, and we’re going back next week to present our case again,” he said last week.

Darn right. With all due respect to the Park Service, we don’t understand how preserving and enhancing a complex that was the industrial heart of Waterloo for most of the 20th century cannot have historic significance. We areapproaching the 100th anniversary of John Deere’s entry into Waterloo with the purchase of the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Co. in 1918,  which was located on that very spot.

Henderson said the project will continue, and that there are backup financing plans. “You never go into a redevelopment project like this without a Plan A, Plan B, Plan C and Plan D,” he said.

Developers have not given up on securing the historic designation for the Tech 2 building, which is scheduled to open in the winter of 2014 with a Radisson business-class hotel with a ground-floor restaurant, John Deere training facility, showroom and office space and a location for education programs of Hawkeye Community College.

“Part of our discussion was how to get started on the west end of the campus around the museum (Deere Tractor and Engine Museum, now under construction) and Tech 1 while we’re still putting all the pieces together for the Green project,” said Steve Dust, president and CEO of TechWorks. “It was important to understand that we continue to move ahead, even though this is a very important part of the project.”

We appreciate and applaud that undaunted approach. We would ask Park Service officials to consider the alternative. Longtime Cedar Valley residents have seen many industrial buildings fall victim to the wrecking ball, which subsequently resulted in aesthetic eyesores and environmental cleanup headaches.

The TechWorks project is a responsible, systematic re-use of a major industrial site in this city, preserving the site’s heritage with a look to future technologies. That’s a plan worth pursuing, and fighting for.

 

 

Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber Elects Leadership

The CEO of one of the largest locally owned firms was elected to lead the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber during its annual meeting held July 16 at the Park Place Event Center.

Tom Penaluna, CEO of The CBE Companies will chair the regional economic and community development organization through its 2014 fiscal year. Penaluna has been a board member of the Alliance & Chamber since 2008, and also was a board member of its predecessor organizations. He completed a term as chair of the affiliated Waterloo Industrial Development Association, and most recently served as vice chair of the Alliance & Chamber. Tom has asserted his leadership in the critical business – education transformation discussion by championing the Leader Valley and Leader in Me initiatives of the Alliance & Chamber. Penaluna also serves on the board of the Iowa Partnership for Economic Progress.

Other officers elected to leading the organization with Penaluna are: Vice Chair -Steve Tscherter, CEO, Lincoln Savings Bank; Treasurer-David Braton, Publisher, The Courier; and Past Chair, Kris Hansen, CEO, Western Home Communities. Steve Dust is president & CEO of the Alliance & Chamber.

The officers are joined by Rich Czarnecki, John Deere Global Director – Large Tractors; TechWorks Campus chair and former mayor Tim Hurley; and Chamber Council Chair Stacy Bentley, President – Community National Bank to form the Alliance & Chamber’s Executive Committee.

Kate Washut, partner, Far Reach, and Steen Hansen, CEO, Bossard North America were elected to the group which represents a broad spectrum of region-wide business, institutional, and local government interests. Sue Armbrecht, President – MidWestOne Bank Cedar Valley, and Chris Fereday, President – PDCM Insurance were re-elected to the board.

Washut and Hansen take the seats formerly occupied by retiring board members Dee Vandeventer, ME&V, and local attorney Hugh Field, partner in the Beecher Law Firm. “Dee and Hugh have been a part of the Alliance &Chamber leadership since its creation. The progress we’ve made in creating and delivering on the vision of a more vital, Cedar Valley economy is due in large part to the persistence and vision of business and civic leaders like Dee and Hugh,” said Dust.

Dust continues, ”Steen and Kate join others on our board who represent yet the next generation of leadership in our economy – businesses that located or started – but intending to grow – in the Cedar Valley of Iowa. They are the voices who need to chart the path for our economy moving forward,” concludes Dust.

John Deere & the Cedar Valley . . . What a Partnership!

Celebrate John Deere’s 175 years in business and thank them for their contribution to the economy of the Cedar Valley.

John Deere Fall Fest 2012 will be recognizing and celebrating John Deere Anniversaries on September 6–8, 2012. Come celebrate John Deere’s rich history of tractor manufacturing and product development as it progressed through history in Waterloo, Iowa – the home and birthplace of John Deere tractors.
6,000 direct jobs for talented Cedar Valley People
Supply Chain Jobs throughout the region
Over $150 million annual impact of disposable income alone for services and retailers.
Reinvestment in: Volunteer Leadership, TechWorks Campus, Education Partnerships, Sports Complex, United Way

SO MUCH MORE!

Schedule of events

Be part of something greater - The Cedar Valley of Iowa

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber is a regional economic community development corporation working to increase economic vitality and wealth in the Waterloo / Cedar Falls area and surrounding economic region. The Alliance & Chamber has approximately 800 members that represents over 40,000 employees